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The profession of medical healthcare is stressful and requires fines and skill to execute even the basic procedures. Anesthesiology is doubly stressful because the entire process requires a perfect balance, precise timing and dosage, for success.
electronic medical record software has advanced with the needs of the healthcare industry and many now offer EMR software specifically designed for the use of anesthesiologists. But which one works best and why? Here are a few ways to determine which EMR software would work best for you.
Everything else being the same, there are some features that are unique to EHR software targeted especially for anesthesiology specialties.
Specific Templates – As with any specialty, anesthesiology also has certain terms and diagnoses anesthesiologists have to use every day. EMR software geared towards anesthesiology have in-built templates for ease of use. These templates are:
ICD/CPT Codes – As the CDC updates diseases and their codes the electronic medical record software takes the onus of searching for these codes away from the specialist and offers them in the software. Constant upgrades ensure that the code list is updated so the doctor won’t have to go out of their way to look for what they need.
Equipment Integration – Because of the sensitive nature of patients under the influence of anesthesia, their vitals are constantly monstered. Anesthesiology EMR software is integrated with critical care monitoring equipment like heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen saturation etc. and that also capture physiologic data. The software automatically stores the data in patient files.
Syncing With Other Software – The EMR software can import patient data from their doctor’s software immediately so time spent transferring files is cut down. Because it saves time, and is an essential tool, especially in a larger practice, it is imperative that the software you choose is compatible with that of the rest of the practice.
Time Calculator – Surgeries can run for hours and timing is key. It would be unfortunate to have a patient wake up during surgery or, for general anesthesia, feel the procedure in any way. The time calculator in the EMR software helps you determine how much of a dose should be given, and if a second dose is required during the procedure.
Side Effects – All patient information is submitted in the EMR software, but it takes things a step further by analyzing prescriptions and setting up alerts for any dangerous drug combinations, or allergies.
Now that you’ve narrowed down all the vendors that provide anesthesiology specific EHR software you need to narrow the selection down to those that fill your requirements as a specialty as well as a medical practice.
Size – Some vendors cater better to large practices while some are best suited to smaller ones. EMR systems are designed keeping a certain number of users, scalability and support required in mind. When selecting a vendor keep in mind the size of your practice.
System Design – The choice, essentially, is between installation of the software in your on-site computer server, or cloud-based software that is available anywhere via Internet. Which system a practice goes for depends on their personal choice and comfort level. Some doctors feel more comfortable having the system on their computer server because they feel this is more compliant with HIPAA requirements, while others need to have access to their database wherever they are. You’ll need to shortlist vendors who fulfill your needs in this department.
Certification – It makes sense to make sure the software you’re going to purchase is certified. For anesthesiology the certification you should be looking out for is by the ONC-Authorized Testing and Certification Body (“ONC-ATCB”). They are responsible for making sure your vendor meets Meaningful Use objectives and is HIPAA compliant.
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